Sarojini Naidu

(13 February 1879 - 2 March 1949 / Hyderabad / India)

Indian Dancer


EYES ravished with rapture, celestially panting, what passionate bosoms aflaming with fire
Drink deep of the hush of the hyacinth heavens that glimmer around them in fountains of light;
O wild and entrancing the strain of keen music that cleaveth the stars like a wail of desire,
And beautiful dancers with houri-like faces bewitch the voluptuous watches of night.


The scents of red roses and sandalwood flutter and die in the maze of their gem-tangled hair,
And smiles are entwining like magical serpents the poppies of lips that are opiate-sweet;
Their glittering garments of purple are burning like tremulous dawns in the quivering air,
And exquisite, subtle and slow are the tinkle and tread of their rhythmical, slumber-soft feet.


Now silent, now singing and swaying and swinging, like blossoms that bend to the breezes or showers,
Now wantonly winding, they flash, now they falter, and, lingering, languish in radiant choir;
Their jewel-girt arms and warm, wavering, lily-long fingers enchant through melodious hours,
Eyes ravished with rapture, celestially panting, what passionate bosoms aflaming with fire!

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004

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